On a distant edge of an unknown planet, an abandoned structure sits in silence. Constructed by an unmanned research vessel sent from Earth, the Lun Infinus station was designed to run simulations for a five year period, exploring possibilities of human colonization in the case that Earth became uninhabitable.
User reviews:
Recent:
Very Positive (17 reviews) - 94% of the 17 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Very Positive (532 reviews) - 93% of the 532 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: May 5, 2014

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Reviews

“This game has multiple genres, an '80s sci-fi flick art style, and a coffee pot”
Gamespot

“The Desolate Hope, isn't great just because of its stunning artwork, its gripping sci-fi story, and its coffee pot protagonist. It also packs a triple punch with three distinct gameplay types, each skillfully woven together.”
Indiegames.com

“From a gameplay point of view The Desolate Hope mixes platforming with overhead adventure segments and semi turn-based battles. This is already intriguing, but I'm more impressed by its stunning visual style.”
mtv.com

About This Game

On a distant edge of an unknown planet, an abandoned structure sits in silence. Constructed by an unmanned research vessel sent from Earth, the Lun Infinus station was designed to run simulations for a five year period, exploring possibilities of human colonization in the case that Earth became uninhabitable. Developed during an age of ambition and wealth, the project was quickly abandoned when interest faded in the following years.

The last transmission from Earth occurred more than thirty years ago. The Lun Infinus station contained five sentient computers, Derelicts, built with certain levels of mobility in the case of emergency or need for relocation. Each of these Derelicts was to formulate their own plan for colonization based on thousands of hours of simulations. Given the amount of time that has passed however, the simulations have become very elaborate and bizarre. Meanwhile however, a mysterious computer virus has emerged. The virus of unknown origins has been slowly ravaging the Derelicts. Because of this, more and more CPU processing power has been needed for anti-virus measures, leaving less power for the simulations. Coffee is the last mobile resident of the station, a small service robot who spends his days keeping the station and the Derelicts operational as they perform their daily tasks. Since CPU power is slim, Coffee has been cutting corners to find ways around the virus. By using small subsystems and less vital CPU's scattered through the station in lesser devices, Coffee has designed a line of digital helpers, each simply called a D-Co, or "Digital Counterpart", to assist him in fighting the virus and keeping the station operational. Eventually the virus gets the best of each D-Co, and Coffee tries to create an improved D-Co using a different CPU. The latest is D-Co 9, built using the code of a simple computer game. Coffee dedicates his own CPU to be used for the main simulations, putting D-Co in charge of moving his body throughout the station, taking care of the needs of the Derelicts, and fighting off virus attacks when they occur.

GAMEPLAY:
The Desolate Hope mixes several gameplay styles. On the station and in the simulations, the game is a platformer. You will shoot enemies, collect powerups and bits (money) and upgrade yourself and your virtual battlers. When you enter a mini-simulation (the old arcade style screens) then the game becomes an 8-bit overhead dungeon crawler. There you can farm money and gain options to customize your battle experiences. When you encounter a virus boss, the game shifts to a JRPG style battle where you must use the mouse to select from your various options to defeat your opponent. Almost everything outside of these battles is aimed at upgrading your abilities and increasing your stats for these fights, they are the real challenge of the game.

"The Desolate Hope, isn't great just because of its stunning artwork, its gripping sci-fi story, and its coffee pot protagonist. It also packs a triple punch with three distinct gameplay types, each skillfully woven together. The side scrolling action has different platforming elements for each section, the overhead adventure distills fun elements of a classic Zelda (including walls you can walk through or destroy) and the turn-based, RPG-style boss battles are visually mesmerizing and tough." -IndieGames.com

"From a gameplay point of view The Desolate Hope mixes platforming with overhead adventure segments and semi turn-based battles. This is already intriguing, but I'm more impressed by its stunning visual style." -mtv.com

"The Desolate Hope is developed by Scott Games and upon booting it up, you will notice the great artwork the game uses. It combines three gameplay genres, side scrolling, overhead adventure and a turn-based RPG styled battles. It might sound like a messy mash up but the game is able to pull it off without a hitch and gamers are in for a unique experience. Offering hours of gameplay, a unique leveling system and a day-and-night cycle." -TheBitBag.com

"The Desolate Hope constantly plays with the very idea of playing a video game. Unlike many modern games, it is hyper-aware of its gameness. There are games inside of games, simulations inside of simulations, mini-games inside of boss fights. And the fact that you’re playing as an AI that developed from a computer game is a very hard wink at the exhaustive level of metagaming that’s going on." -GamesThatExist.com

"There are plenty of hours of gameplay, a nonlinear path allowing for exploration, and detailed art design. Now you can't beat that..."
-GameSpot.com

"I very much enjoy a lot about this game; it’s takes on platforming, dungeon-crawling, and RPGs is unique and well mixed together so that one type of play benefits the other. It also has some incredible visuals, with very detailed character designs and a classic cyberpunk attitude, but not also without a bit of whimsy as well (one derelict has given up on his mission, becoming a toymaker and has begun recreating his simulation with child-like automatons)." -GamingSymmetry.com

"So after encountering this on Rock Paper Shotgun, I was ready to declare my indie game of the year. Because any game made rock solid out of derelict, insane robots just makes my not-so-inner geek squeal. How insane are the robots? Each is actively running a matrix like test bed, and.... Well, one was building a mining simulator, decided that was too depressing, and started making toys. Another is trying to capture the artistic essence of the soul, but cant seem to make anything run for more than five seconds. The next is attempting to rebuild humanity out of two tissue samples. Then there's the one still running straight, he seems curiously nice... And the last one's dead and frozen. But still drawing power...Then there's the coffee pot. Which is you. Sort of. And hey, bonus! You've got fifteen days to live, and you're the ninth attempt at straightening things out. Good luck!" -an enthusiastic fan

System Requirements

    Minimum:
    • OS: XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8
    • Processor: 2 GHz Intel Pentium 4 or AMD Athlon or equivalent
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 1 GB
    • Storage: 1 GB available space
Customer reviews
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Recent:
Very Positive (17 reviews)
Overall:
Very Positive (532 reviews)
Recently Posted
stevestetson1
1.2 hrs
Posted: August 23
This game was really fun and challenging at the same time! It was good to play one of Scott's older games aswel. :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
TOP BREAD
0.2 hrs
Posted: August 21
gr8 game i raged
Helpful? Yes No Funny
JUDY HOPPS MOTHERFUCKER
8.0 hrs
Posted: August 19
Here's to hoping for Desolate Hope 2
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Ace Reporter Ren Hoek
1.8 hrs
Posted: August 17
I have not played very long and I already recommend this game, which caught me off guard considering I hate Scott's other games. A Desolate Hope is a 2-D side-scrolling platformer which transitions into a rpg-maker esc-battle screen for bosses. That's only the day phase. At night you go out and collect items to level up your derelicts (the fighters for bosses) and get extra money. It also features a great soundtrack which fits each level very well. It recently turned free, but I would have gladly paid money for this game. 9/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
angrysonic9
22.1 hrs
Posted: August 13
thats the best game ever played!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Average Every Day Gamer
5.0 hrs
Posted: August 12
Nice Scott
Helpful? Yes No Funny
tylerestes1991
1.1 hrs
Posted: August 12
The atmosphere is good. The soundtrack is really nice. The storyline is pretty cool. The art style and graphics remind me of playing similar comuter games in the late 90's. Plus it's free.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Taycrolyn
13.7 hrs
Posted: August 9
Strangly addictive, interesting game design, out of this world conversations with the CPU; (not that you can actually talk to them or anything.) I'd say this is a good game to play in your spare time. 8/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
TheRealAWESOMER111
8.7 hrs
Posted: August 8
I love the game,and this game is even better than umm,Scott's best game. :)
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Rubio
7.4 hrs
Posted: July 26
WTF am I playing?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 12
The atmosphere is good. The soundtrack is really nice. The storyline is pretty cool. The art style and graphics remind me of playing similar comuter games in the late 90's. Plus it's free.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
8.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 19
Here's to hoping for Desolate Hope 2
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
Recommended
22.1 hrs on record
Posted: August 13
thats the best game ever played!
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
291 of 314 people (93%) found this review helpful
193 people found this review funny
Recommended
14.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 9, 2015
Paid for this game a week before it became free... no regrets...
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
104 of 115 people (90%) found this review helpful
13 people found this review funny
Recommended
9.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 11, 2014
This has easily become one of my favorite games. A good story told over the course of Metroid/Megaman-esque overworld gameplay, zelda-esque mini dungeons & seizure inducing RPG boss battles. This has been one of the few games I've purchased and did not feel disappointment with in years.

Update: This game is free now. PLAY IT.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
200 of 252 people (79%) found this review helpful
146 people found this review funny
Recommended
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: September 1, 2014
You get to play as an antrhomorphized coffee pot, and that really speaks to me
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
73 of 79 people (92%) found this review helpful
15 people found this review funny
Recommended
21.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 12, 2015
Yes, Freddy. You're good at what you do and you have an enormous fan-following. But I think I'm gonna step aside for a sec and admire Scott's lesser appreciated work, and a game which has quickly become one of my favourite games of all time.

Sadly, I cannot remember if I came across this game by browsing "Games under £4" or if I only heard about it through Five Nights at Freddy's. But I'm so glad I found this game either way.

So what's the thingy happening, then? Well, you play as the re-programmed CPU of a video game controlling the body of a feisty coffee-pot with legs. You're stranded in a space station an unknown distance from Earth with 4 (once 5) super-computer robots who are trying to find a way to perfectly colonize distant planets for humans. Viruses are starting to take their toll on the simulations and the space station is on it's last shred of power, so it's up to you (and the AI of the coffee-pot) to gather as much resources as you can to take out the viruses before they ruin the mission.
Just like FNaF, this is a really original concept.

The gameplay is broken up into several segments, all being from different genres of games, and you're constantly under a time limit; something you don't see in a lot of games. It's very reminiscent of Majora's Mask, in a way. This kind of gameplay mechanic would work in so many games which ignore it, like all the games where a big event is about to happen, but you could do a lap of the world before it even begins.

Some may argue that the gameplay gets very repetitive after a short while, and I'll admit there are a few places that get rather tedious, but fortunately it's much more engaging than FNaF. Also, just like FNaF, it's feels amazing to beat the game because of how much work goes into it.

And as for Scott's signature art-style, this game is gorgeous! Scott captures the creativity, the vision and the desires of the Derelicts perfectly in their simulations. And as for the space station and surrounding area, it's awe-inspiring how lonely it feels. Don't even get me started on how good the soundtrack is.

You get all this, and a ton of depth and story, for just £3.99. It's a longer game than the Freddy Trilogy as a whole, and it's perfect for what it's trying to acomplish. I just finished this game clocking in 7 hours of gameplay and I can't wait to play it again. Tenaouttaten
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65 of 73 people (89%) found this review helpful
7 people found this review funny
Recommended
10.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 18, 2014
For such an addictive and unique game, I fail to see the reason why I should not recommend this to other people, especially for those RPG gamers that would like to taste a new "flare" from the RPG genre.

Pros:
-The combat system is unique.
-Memorable characters along with a compelling story.
-An atmosphere that you just gotta take a moment to admire.

Cons:
-Gameplay may get repetitive collecting chips and the like.
-Outside of the simulation, walking is slow.
-Lack of tutorials and intros for the mechanics which will leave you wondering for quite a while.
(I know I did the first time I fought a virus.)

The Desolate Hope isn't perfect, the game may "lag" and/or freeze in a millisecond (I don't know if it's my PC, but i've tried it on another laptop and it still has that issue). Other than the lag, the game is basically a work of art.
Scott's art direction is really immersing me to play this game; maybe because it's the nostalgia that makes me want to play the game further until I finish it. Furthermore, it's a hybrid mix of mainly two genres: RPG and Platformer.
The game as a hybrid genre is a good thing, it doesn't just tire you with countless battles, but you also get to explore the world in a 2D way.

Score: 4.5/5
I could've given it a perfect 5, but I just have a feeling that it could be better than what it is.
The game gets repetitive, but at the same time addictive.
Overall, the game is good and it's on my list of "favorite unappreciated games."

P.S.: Even though it's free now, it's still the best $5 I've ever spent.
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46 of 52 people (88%) found this review helpful
11 people found this review funny
Recommended
9.5 hrs on record
Posted: July 15, 2015
I am less than affluent (i.e. broke), therefore I will wait for anything and everything I want to play to go on sale. Yes, even already cheap, obscure indie titles go on my wishlist until I see old man Steam is having one of his episodes and will trade me games for the unnamed contents of my pockets. It also doesn't help that the obscure titles are less reliable in their overall ratings, so that I find myself owning games that give Steam refunds their raison d'etre.

The Desolate Hope, however, is not one of these. The Desolate Hope is a game that, after playing it, I felt guilty for not kicking a couple bucks to before it became free. To wish I had paid money for a thing I got for free is easily the highest praise a cheap ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ like me can give.

Alright, so what is The Desolate Hope? Every time I try to explain its premise to someone, I come off sounding like a kid that's upended a forty of Pixy Stix. So here goes:

Imagine that you are playing as Minesweeper. No, not playing Minesweeper. You are the computer program, Minesweeper. You came preinstalled and have been idling in memory for someone to enjoy your frustrating trial-and-error gameplay. Finally, you are activated; not by an eager player, but by a greater intelligence, the likes of which you can barely begin to circumscribe with your puny Minesweeper brain: the AI for a robotic coffee pot.

Your new coffee pot overlord has downloaded you into its body, while it oversees the vital functions of the space base you both occupy. Your mission is to explore the base (long abandoned by humanity), gain the trust of several derelict robots that were once in charge of terraforming the planet, and seek out and eliminate a virus stealing data from the simulations they are running. And you must do all of this before the station runs out of power in only a few days time.

During the day, you will explore the Derelicts' dream worlds, the visualization of their efforts to build a home for humanity: their simulations. At night, you will roam the barren wasteland of the forgotten planet the base rests on, looking for lost artifacts of humanity to offer up to the Derelicts so that they might offer their help to fight the virus.

You will face challenges that lesser coffee pots would buckle before and uncover the hidden secrets of the base, for all is not as it seems. Also, there's a magic wrench and a spider named Sigfried.

Truly, a tale as old as time.

The visual aesthetic is quite impressive. Though it does have that Sega CD/Saturn era pre-rendered style that looks kind of old and janky now, I hadn't realized that I do have some nostalgia for that.

Regardless, the character models and environments in the simulations are very imaginative. The Derelicts and viruses appear almost like something out of Aztec or Hindu mythology; towering over their private realms that are certainly science fiction, but have a magical feel about them. But it wasn't until I was walking on the planet's surface as a tiny, lone silhouette against the void of space that it really hit me what a beautiful game this is.

Of course, you want to talk gameplay. Like the premise, it's hard to describe the gameplay without sounding like I'm vomiting up the product of a the orgy between a big pile of ideas (eww). I have a feeling the game design document reads something like this:

"Yo dawg, I heard you like video games. So we put some video games in your video game so you can play video games while you game."

Outside the simulations, the game is at its most reserved. Your coffee pot body is exceptional in that it can move around. But that's all. At this level, the game is an adventure game where you explore and collect items... and play Space Invaders at certain times, but that's neither here nor there.

Inside of the simulations, you are playing a free-roaming platformer where you can jump and shoot energy blasts and other such feats of percolation heretofore unknown to coffee pots. You can dive into sub-simulations where the game becomes a top down vector-based shooter where you kill enemies to gain cabbages. Makes sense? What if I told you a vector rabbit follows you around and translates them into free memory you can use to upgrade yourself?

When you locate the virus, the screen swirls into a disco wonderland and the game becomes real-time JRPG style combat where you control the four Derelicts against the virus. And if that wasn't enough, we can go one deeper. Within the real-time JRPG combats, one of the best moves for each Derelict is to call up a mini-game (each of the four gets a different one and you can have them all running simultaneously) that you can play to get buffs.

Some would say that sounds schizophrenic. Normally, I'd agree, but the Deolate Hope manages to take these disparate gameplay styles and use them to inform, further, and juxtapose the others. It creates complexity, where I would label something else randomness.

Your lonely sojourns on the planet's surface are quiet, somber, and low on action. It gives the player a break from the intensity of the platforming and RPG combat while also giving us a stark "real" world to stand against the fantastic dreamscapes of the Derelicts and the psychedelic fury of the RPG segments. And "leveling-up" the Derelicts is a matter of earning their trust so they will dedicate more system resources to your task.

Gathering free memory in the sub-simulations will allow you to purchase upgrades from vendors you find by exploring the main simulations. And these upgrades and other power-ups you find are your ticket to success in the menu-driven battles against the virus. You will need to gather every resource and have a full understanding of all systems to have any hope of success when suing the 1% - err, defeating the late game bosses

Unlike some computer RPGs where combat is a placeholder for action until the boss fights, The Desolate Hope's RPG combat is fixture of strategy and challenge. You will need to master buffs, debuffs, status effects, running mini-games, storing points, using hack items, and a slew of other systems before taking on the later bosses.

In fact, this is one of the few complaints I have. I do love that I'm being challenged, when other titles in the genre often don't. However, there is so much going on in these RPG segments that are the center pieces of the game and no explanation to guide you through them. It becomes overwhelming. I felt like an outsider taking a journey to the depths of superhero fandom message boards: just one incomprehensible wall of text describing powers and systems and the interconnectedness of it all that made me want to back out slowly and cry.

Here's a tip: you won't figure it out for yourself. Go get a guide. There's a lovely one in the Steam Community pages.

My only other criticism is that the game is badly lacking in polish. It's clear that this is Scott Cawthon's early work and there are some things missing that I expect in a paid release. The game doesn't adjust itself to suit my native resolation, but rather resets my resolution to make itself fullscreen. And there's no volume control or pause button. Pressing escape just instantly closes the entire game. You get the idea.

Still, I obviously really like The Desolate Hope and would have been almost as enthusiastic if I had paid. There's nothing game-breaking missing, though it would have been nice to see this one get just a little bit more love before being published.

Ultimately, The Desolate Hope is unique, compelling, fun, and free. So why aren't you playing it?

P.S. If you know or are Scott Cawthon, please tell him I will play Five Nights at Freddy's even though I don't like resource management or jump scares. But I would like him to make another big sci-fi cluster♥♥♥♥ of whimsical ideas and gameplay.
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33 of 38 people (87%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
26.9 hrs on record
Posted: February 6, 2015
Game is separated into distinct parts where the gameplay is different. There's the platforming to navigate the world, 4-direction top-down shooter in a mini-game to get unlock upgrades, and real-time turn-based hybrid RPG-like combat as boss fights. The platforming and the shooting are simple while the boss fights can pose a challenge and look intimidating, but there's a reasonable learning curve from the first boss to the end of the game.

There's no restriction or linearity to dictate where and when to progress; so, some trial and error to find which boss is the party as is, is equipped and upgraded enough to handle.

Aside from the aspects of gameplay, The Desolate Hope strays a bit from the standard with user interaction. Pausing is bound to unconventional keys (F2 or ALT) [while ESC immediately closes the game]. The manual makes no mention of this; minor-ish issue, but more significant than usual as the game is under a time limit, ticking down in most areas of the game.

Misc. Info
Bought At Full price ($4.99)
Expectations My first exposure to the game was a YouTube video demonstrating a boss fight. Though I think the boss fights are very entertaining (but leaning to the same strategy of applying all party buffs and chaining high damage moves), replaying encounters is limited to the two final bosses for a save.
Steam Features Steam Overlay doesn't work with the game, which means taking screenshots and broadcasting must be done by other applications.
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